30 Day Experiment – Biphasic Sleep

08 Feb
Biphasic Sleep Pie Chart

First off, thank you to those who were kind enough to leave encouraging and helpful comments and suggestions for me on my earlier post in which I was looking for things to do to fill my new time gap. I’ve taken note of all your suggestions and will be trying them out shortly. For now though, I want to talk about a little project that’s been festering in a dark corner of my mind for a while now: Biphasic Sleep.

I’ve read some articles, studies, and papers on circadian rhythms, sleep partitioning, and optimizing productivity. So, apparently, not everyone sleeps all at once in a 7 hour chunk at night. o_O There are, apparently, other ways to partition you sleeping habits that may be even better for your productivity and feeling of wellbeing. Enter biphasic sleep.

The gist of it is that your body can think, learn, and run better if it’s given a second “booster sleep” part way through the day, leaving less time needed at night. In the end you gain a little more waking hours(needing less sleep overall), and you are more productive and alert while you are awake. Sounds good right?

What’s the catch you might ask? Well, from what I’ve found, not too much. The one thing people cite as a negative is being out a sync a bit with the majority of the people who are monophasic(getting all their sleep in one chunk). They lose a little face time with those people due to the power sleep in the day. I think it would be fun to try this out for myself.

So…for the next 30 days I will be experimenting with a biphasic sleep pattern and sustaining it. Details will be made up on the fly, very seat of the pants style planning and adjusting. I’ll be giving you, my loyal readers, some weekly updates on my experiences. With the extra hours I gain I’ll be taking a crack at adding some of those suggestions you all made to my lifestyle as well. Hope you’ll stick around for what looks to be an interesting month!


Posted by on February 8, 2011 in Personal


Tags: , , ,

5 responses to “30 Day Experiment – Biphasic Sleep

  1. PGY1

    February 9, 2011 at 2:49 am

    Let us know how you do! I may be unintentionally trying this now after falling asleep super early after meditating. Or maybe I’ll just wake up for good for today. Hmm, more sleep after a bit of activity or go in early and surprise my awesome Rheumatology attendings with early completed consults & follow-ups?

    I do have some sleep physiology- and circadian rhythm-related concerns about this sleep pattern but would rather see your results speak for themselves before I start ticking off potential issues.

    • Flustered Grad

      February 9, 2011 at 11:13 pm

      I’ll look forward to our post-experiment discussion on all this then!

  2. Mike

    February 9, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    Kevin, I am extremely interested to see how this turns out for you. I have been considering planning a nap into my daily routine for this exact reason (hitting a tired and unproductive wall during the day and resorting to coffee) Good luck!

    • Flustered Grad

      February 9, 2011 at 11:15 pm

      Thanks for the encouragement Mike! I know how you feel with the afternoon slump/coffee binge. Good to have you following along!


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